Frugal Fun with Music

This afternoon we made musical instruments from recyclables. This was a big hit and Emily is still making lots of new sounds with her drum, guitar, and shaker. We made the drum with an empty oatmeal canister. If you saw this post, you would understand why we have a lot of these!

This version of a guitar was made with an empty plastic chocolate container and some rubber bands. Emily liked the sound this made, and it was so easy!
This one was probably her favorite — a shaker made from an empty paper towel roll, some wax paper, rubber bands, and filled with some dry beans.
Have an idea for a recycled musical instrument that I forgot to add? I would love to hear about it! Leave a comment and share your ideas with us!


  1. donmarkphoto says

    she looks so happy!
    please, please, please post any new ideas for the oatmeal cans. i have several of these saved (we eat a lot of oatmeal)and would love new ideas on how to use them!

  2. What a great challenge — I’m sure we will be able to come up with several ideas!


  3. I had never thought about using rubber bands on a a container to make a “guitar” – very clever!

    Others that I or my son have made in the past not mentioned are:
    – Paint stick clappers (paint sticks that are painted and then the sticks are banged together)
    – Tamborine made out of an aluminum pie pan with either bottlecaps or pop tabs attached with paper prongs
    – Digeradoo made out of cardboard or long plastic pipe
    – Plastic shakers made out of 2plastic cups taped together or old margarine tubs decorated filled with beans, rice, beads or any of number of different thing (makes different noises depending on what is inside).

  4. Learn and Master Guitar says

    Great homemade instruments which the child in the blog is playing with.

  5. What fun projects! I especially like the guitar!